Can you bring a bad-faith claim against your insurer?

Insurance companies can come up with more reasons to avoid paying a claim than children can for not doing homework. While some may be legitimate, many are not.

Insurance companies make more money if they make claiming difficult. They have a right to carry out a full investigation of any claim. They have an obligation to pay valid ones. It is crucial to hold an insurer to account if they are obstructive. One option may be to bring a bad-faith claim.

What does bad faith mean?

The law expects insurers to act in good faith toward their customers. It expects them to behave with honesty and decency. When they fail to do that, a court may consider they acted in bad faith.

Here are some ways that insurers act in bad faith:

  • They tell you your policy does not cover you when it does: If an insurance salesman tells you a policy covers something it does not, they have misled you on purpose.
  • They try to confuse you: There is a reason insurance policies are hard to read. Insurance companies do so to bamboozle you.
  • They do not answer: Insurers need to be responsive to your correspondence. Ignoring you or failing to follow up is unacceptable.
  • They take too long: If an insurer is moving unreasonably slow, it may be in the hope you will give up.
  • They push a lowball payment on you: Offering you an amount that is far too low is an act of bad faith. Insurers know what a claim is worth. They are aware you might not.

Insurers act in bad faith because it can pay them to do so. Seeking legal help to hold an insurer to account is essential when they try these tactics on you.

Archives

FindLaw Network